“I just happen to think that in life we need to be a little like the farmer, who puts back into the soil what he takes out.”

Paul Newman

Whether you’ve received some ill-fitting clothes for Christmas or Hanukkah with no gift receipt, or you’re just excited to kick off the new year with a purge of old clothes, it’s likely you have some clothes on your hands that don’t fit you very well.

Don’t resign yourself to an overcrowded closet or wearing unflattering clothes, though. Whether you’re an expert seamstress or a dud at DIY, or even if you just want to make some extra cash, here are seven easy and creative ways to reuse these clothes.

1. Reuse old t-shirts to make pillows

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Our favorite thing about old t-shirts is how soft they are — why not put that to good use by making them into pillows? Just cut off the sleeves, fill them with pillow stuffing, and sew up the bottom. If you aren’t handy with a needle and thread, you can even duct tape the opening for a quick fix. Pillow stuffing is cheap to buy online or at most craft stores, or if you’re trying to get rid of even more t-shirts, you can stuff your t-shirt pillow with more rolled-up t-shirts.Bonus: if pillows aren’t really your thing, consider making a quilt!

Quilts are great for using up old clothes or other fabric. And if all the different squares don’t match, it doesn’t matter! Quilts look better the more diverse they are.

2. Treat your pet to an adorable outfit

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Those old jeans may not look cute on you anymore… but there’s no way they wouldn’t be cute on your puppy. If you’re not an ambitious enough at sewing to make dog pants, try something easier: pop a small t-shirt onto a mid- to large-sized dog, or cut up fabric to use for a dog bandana.

3. Turn sleeveless shirts into bags

A tank top becomes a tote bag

Sew the bottom of a tank top together and you have a perfect shopping bag with a little extra personality. Bonus points: save the environment even more by saying no to shopping bags. If you live in a state where they charge for shopping bags, count this a money saver as well!

4. Turn tattered clothes into headbands

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Headbands, bandanas, or other hair pieces are a snap to make. Just cut a long strip of fabric or a square out of your favorite shirt or skirt, and you’re ready to go. Whether for going out, running, or just cleaning the house, an extra bandana or headband to keep your hair out of your face can always come in handy.

5. Take tight or short clothes and turn them into a sexy Halloween costume

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Is that flannel shirt a little tight? Pair it with some short jorts for a sexy cowgirl look — just because it’s not work appropriate doesn’t mean it’s not perfect for Halloween. Other good costume ideas for too-small clothing include: sexy boy scout or girl scout, sexy teacher, or sexy librarian.

6. Sell them for some extra cash

You’d be surprised — selling your clothes at second-hand clothing stores can add up to a pretty decent pay day. While you’ll often only get a few dollars for each piece, you never know which old items might suddenly be in demand again, or even be considered vintage.

7. Donate them to the needy

Because nothing feels better around the holidays than sharing with those less fortunate, why not give away old clothes to the needy? Goodwill or the Salvation Army have drop off locations all over the country, and it’s a great feeling to know that the clothes that no longer fit you may look just perfect on somebody else.

Featured photo credit: Cat in a cute outfit via picjumbo.com

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